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J Box Question

 
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Old 11-20-2009, 02:20 AM   #1
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J Box Question


First I want to say that I know all the old wiring really needs to be replaced but that isn't for me to decide here.

Is there a special junction box that you can use to enclose an existing splice without taking the splice apart? My sister is selling her house and the USDA inspector is requiring all splices to be enclosed in a junction box. There are about 15 in her basement and attic. Most of the wiring is old cloth braided wiring and most of the splices are brittle. It seems it would be much easier to leave the splices as they are and simply install a box that would somehow enclose the splice undisturbed.

Basically like a normal box but having small slots where the box meets the cover plate.

Thanks for any advice.
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Old 11-20-2009, 06:01 AM   #2
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Re: J Box Question


sounds like a DIY question as I would be amazed if a competent electrician would cover up possibly incorrectly connected wires that may cause an electrical fire.

USDA - is the government branching off into home inspections now?

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Old 11-20-2009, 08:52 AM   #3
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Re: J Box Question


Quote:
Originally Posted by 72chevy4x4 View Post
sounds like a DIY question as I would be amazed if a competent electrician would cover up possibly incorrectly connected wires that may cause an electrical fire.

USDA - is the government branching off into home inspections now?
I'm not an electrician and have never claimed to be. I also won't be doing the electrical work. However, I am a contractor and seeing as how this is contractortalk.com and not CompetentElectricianTalk.com, I thought I might find someone that would offer up a way they would solve this.

The buyer is getting a USDA rural development loan and they sent an inspector out. Not sure if inspector is employed by the gov or not.

Last edited by ChadTheAnimal; 11-20-2009 at 09:05 AM.
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Old 11-20-2009, 09:36 AM   #4
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Re: J Box Question


I know exactly what you want and there is no such box that will close like a clamshell around a splice. You'll need to open up the splice, put each leg into a separate j-box and then connect the 2 j-boxes with a piece of Romex or flex.
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Old 11-20-2009, 10:16 AM   #5
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Re: J Box Question


Thanks Zinsco. I knew I had never heard or seen that done but thought I would ask.
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Old 11-20-2009, 10:30 AM   #6
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Re: J Box Question


I'm not sure about the codes in your area but if I uncover this old wire we are required to remove all we can see. This always puts the client on the hook for extra wiring work and repairs.

In a simple bathroom renovation the building inspectors are not monsters and allow us to cut out the old wire and replace with new. Not re wire the whole house - all though this is the safest and best option.

What I have found is that it is much easier to wrap that old wire as is with new electrical tape. Wrap it back and forth 3-4 times over a 36" distance with the splice being in the middle. Secure the old wire with a new fastener at each end and cut the splice (power off ra ra ra).

I think you will find that you need two JB per splice if there is no slack in the line. Leave well enough alone as the more you mess with this wire the more it decays.

Good Luck.
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Old 11-20-2009, 11:21 AM   #7
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Re: J Box Question


Chad, I was not implying you were wanting to do the job, rather it was something your sister might try to undertake which could become more dangerous if it were improperly connected aluminum to copper splices...more dangerous to the next owner that is

JohnFRWhipple, I am curious; what you described about wrapping in tape and leaving the splice in the center, does that indicate leaving splices outisde of a JB is ok in your area (of Canada) or is that then sliding the wrapped wire into the box?

interesting about the USDA and lending money. Seems some of their programs covers repairs to the property as part of the loan package... http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/rhs/sfh/brief_rhguar.htm maybe that will help out your sis!
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Old 11-20-2009, 10:11 PM   #8
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Re: J Box Question


Thanks for the replies.

Sorry 72chevy for being defensive. I know I don't have a lot of post and wrongly assumed I would be getting a lot of "hack" comments.
Picturing my sis trying to do the electrical gave me a good laugh though.

I'm sure there is a logical reason as to why they don't make a box for this but it still seems to me to make sense to have a box for this situation. In my mind, you are taking one splice that has been working for decades, disturbing the fragile wiring and turning one splice into two. To me, you are doubling the possible problem spots.
I guess since it should all be replaced anyway, they have no reason to allow it.

In this situation, all the splices involved have been exposed for decades and not something she uncovered in a renovation. She is simply selling her home and the inspector is requiring this to be done for the buyer to get a USDA mortgage.


The inspector involved is similar to one a buyer would hire to look over the home before they buy but is actually working for USDA to make sure the property meets their standards and all he is requiring is for the splices to be enclosed in a junction box.

Have a good weekend

Last edited by ChadTheAnimal; 11-20-2009 at 10:14 PM.
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Old 11-25-2009, 02:14 PM   #9
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Re: J Box Question


These wouldn't perhaps happen to be construction-original cables soldered/spliced to old knob and tube wiring and wrapped with asphalt-impregnated tape?
If so, that was acceptable practice.
Shouldn't the buyer have to pay for the modification either way, because he made an offer for the place as-is, or pay more because it has been up-graded?
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Old 01-04-2010, 04:00 AM   #10
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Re: J Box Question


Sorry I've been MIA. My sister had an electrician make the repairs. None of the wiring was knob and tube. Just a bunch of splices with electrical tape probably done 15 to 20 years ago.

The loan the buyer was getting required these things to be done. The seller could choose not to do them but then would have to find another buyer and who knows how long that may have taken. Especially since I think the USDA rural development loan is about the only 100% loan going right now other than FHA which requires I think 3.5% down but can be a gift from a family member.
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Old 01-04-2010, 09:19 AM   #11
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Re: J Box Question


In order to even manufacture such a box, you would have to know how many of what type and sizes of cables are going to be in it.

Let's start with NM ("Romex") first. You have several different sizes: 14, 12, 10, 8 and 6 in a typical residence. You have 2-wire, 3-wire, 4-wire and even 5-wire. In order to get a listing for a box, you have to know how many of what types are going to be in the box.

To compount the problem even further, you need to know what direction they are all coming from.

The sheer number of possibilities make it impossible to manufacture enough of them to end up with a marketable product. Even if certain combinations were able to be combined with a 'range', the number of SKUs needed would still be staggering.
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Old 01-04-2010, 11:22 AM   #12
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Re: J Box Question


what about a wiremold box?
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Old 01-04-2010, 11:46 AM   #13
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Re: J Box Question


Quote:
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what about a wiremold box?
How would you get the wires into it?
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Old 01-04-2010, 12:19 PM   #14
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Re: J Box Question


Quote:
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How would you get the wires into it?
The box is two peices, fasten the backing take the approiate knockout out and then attach the top of box. I am not recommending this method, just saying there are boxes that may work.
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Old 01-04-2010, 03:05 PM   #15
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Re: J Box Question


Quote:
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The box is two peices, fasten the backing take the approiate knockout out and then attach the top of box. I am not recommending this method, just saying there are boxes that may work.

Those KOs are designed for the Wiremold itself, not cables alone.
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Old 01-04-2010, 07:16 PM   #16
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Re: J Box Question


Installing 15-20 junction boxes equal ka-ching!

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